Clearsight Comment on Current Market Conditions

Today I received a link to a Clearsight “market communique.” It starts off with a little technical charting stuff that I’m not too fond of:

After rebounding nicely from its June lows through the first week of September, the TSX Composite Index has fallen over 4%. As in previous setbacks, the index now stands at a key valuation level that if held might lead to another bounce. In the most recent rally and ensuing downturn however, there has been a general absence of many signals at key price breakpoints for the leading stocks in the index.

See what I mean? I’m not a big fan of “valuation levels”, “signals”, or “price breakpoints”…load of crap if you ask me. No offense to them, I just don’t get off on technical analysis (of stock price charts at least :-)).

Apparently a US slowdown has begun, “For over a year, economists have sounded an alarm that a U.S. economic slowdown would begin, as an unprecedented bull-run in residential housing comes to an end. This forecast has now become reality.”

No big surprise, economists can’t agree on what will happen (haven’t they invented crystal balls yet?):

Some economists and market observers are now predicting an outright recession, while others call for a ‘mid-business cycle slowdown’, i.e., soft landing to occur. Even the more optimistic admit however, that this slowdown will feel like a recession to many people.

There final advice is a bit mixed:

On balance, there appears to be a reasonable likelihood that the economy will avoid recession, at least in the near term. This in and of itself however, may not be enough to spark a genuine rally in the markets. Even so, abandoning one’s investments completely at this point would generally not be advisable for long term investors, not to mention impractical. But, cash is not a four letter word, and finding opportunities to take profits and increase cash holdings in markets such as the current one can help add comfort and stability for long term investors

In essence they provide some optimism, or hope for those who are worried about a downturn, and give some very sound advice, 1) to not sell the farm, but 2) hold some cash, and if you are a bit underweight right now, selling a few equities wouldn’t be a bad thing to do.

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